As students are gearing up for the start of the new school year, colleges are bracing themselves for the flood of applications and student transcripts from high schools across the country.
Traditionally, students requested their high schools to send paper transcripts to colleges of their choice, taking weeks from the initial request until the time it arrives at a registrar’s office. Today, electronic transcript companies like Parchment are making it easier and more secure to request and send academic records.
The Scottsdale-based company launched in 2003 with just 190 eTranscripts sent or received. In ten years, that number has grown to ten million eTranscripts shared and Parchment has over 7,700 high school and postsecondary educational institutions using their technology.
eTranscripts are simplifying the college application process and providing peace of mind for students and parents anxiously waiting to hear from colleges. Parchment’s eTranscript platform allows students to track the movement of their transcripts, unlike traditional paper transcripts, and can see when it’s been received and opened.
Emily Wininger, a student at Arizona State University, would prefer if all schools use the simplified technology.
“There is always such a hassle when you have to order transcripts through the school because it takes so long for them to send your official transcript,” Wininger said. “When students are on a deadline for scholarships or other applications, waiting on a school to send a transcript is tiresome.”
Parchment eliminates the risk of sending transcripts by completely automating the sending and receiving process to ensure students’ information arrives safely to the university. The data collected when institutions digitize the transcript process can be used to support education attainment objectives.
“One of the most fulfilling aspects of our work at Parchment is the opportunity to support student success by helping our member institutions unlock the value of the eTranscript,” said Parchment CEO Matthew Pittinsky, Ph.D. “Through the leadership of our Members, we are making good progress toward a market where all education credentials are exchanged electronically and are used to promote education attainment and enhance career opportunities.”
About 25 percent of all high schools, and 30 percent of postsecondary schools in the United States use Parchment’s eTranscripts solutions, and eight states are adopting Parchment in statewide initiatives. On average, Parchment saves institutions $6.30 per transcript, meaning that in 2013 alone, the company saved schools almost $12 million from the nearly two million transcripts exchanged.
As the trend towards digitizing academic data and online education increases, more institutions will be using this technology. Students and their respective colleges will have an easier time collecting and managing transcripts saving the schools both money and paper. “Currently Arizona State University, University of Arizona and Northern Arizona receive and 40 percent of Arizona’s secondary school enrollments send eTranscripts via Parchment.” Pittinsky said.
Learn more about Parchment here.